As dangerous as high blood pressure is for your health, more than a third of those with high blood pressure don’t realize they have a problem.
The first step to lowering your blood pressure is realizing you need to do something about it. After that, it’s up to you to take the necessary steps to lower your blood pressure.
So what are some natural ways to lower blood pressure?
Turn off the cell phone – A ringing cell phone has been shown to raise blood pressure by as much as seven points according to Italian research presented at the 2013 meeting of the American Society of Hypertension. Experts suspect the disruption may cause momentary anxiousness that leads to the spike.
Take l-arginine and l-citrulline – Extensive studies have been conducted on the benefits of taking the amino acids l-arginine and l-citrulline. L-arginine is a precursor for the vasodilator nitric oxide. Nitric oxide improves blood flow by expanding the blood vessels.
Go vegetarian – Analysis published in JAMA Internal Medicine, a vegetarian diet can help lower blood pressure by up to 7 points. How does eating more like a vegetarian help? Plants are low in sodium and high in potassium to help lower blood pressure.
Take time to relax – People that regularly feel stressed or anxious are more likely to develop hypertension. Whether your stress relief is to take a few deep breathes or exercise, do something that can help relieve your tension.
Get more sun – Low levels of vitamin D are believed to be related to high blood pressure according to a British analysis of 35 different studies. Getting some time in the sun will help you get an extra dose of vitamin D. A study in the Journal of Investigative Dermatology found just 20 minutes of UV exposure helps blood vessels expand to boost overall cardiovascular health.
Take an evening walk – Replace a half hour of TV time with a walk in the evening. Adults, no matter how active, who watch the most TV are at greater risk of dying from cardiovascular disease compared to those who don’t watch as much TV. The more moderate exercise you partake in, including an evening stroll, the more likely your blood pressure will remain at a healthy level.
Take in some beet juice – According to an Australian study in 2012, drinking 17 ounces of beet juice has been shown to drop blood by five points in just six hours. The nitrates found in beets help relax the blood vessels and improve blood flow.
Eat more wild blueberries – Wild blueberries have been shown to help the blood vessels relax, especially during times of stress according to research from the University of Maine. The antioxidants are believed to support healthy blood pressure.
Eat more potatoes – Aim to eat 2,000 to 4,000 mg of potassium a day to help lower your blood pressure. Both potatoes and sweet potatoes are great sources of potassium. Tomatoes, orange juice, bananas, kidney beans, peas, cantaloupe, honeydew melon, prunes and raisins are all great sources of potassium.
Cut your sodium intake – Most Americans should cut their sodium intake in half for healthier blood pressure. That means cutting sodium intake to 1,500 mg a day. Remember the sodium doesn’t just come from your saltshaker but from many other foods.
Eat dark chocolate – The flavonoids in dark chocolate have been shown to increase the elasticity of the blood vessels and have been shown to help lower blood pressure levels.